ThinkorSwim platform under Java 6

Discussion in 'Trading Software' started by syswizard, Feb 20, 2009.

  1. Has anyone experienced any problems in using the TOS desktop program after switching out the jre folder contents for the latest Java 1.6_11 edition ?
    I can't believe they still insist on using the 2 year old edition of Java as a warning box comes up if you replace the jre folder contents.
    If the techies there are supposedly so good, why haven't they been able to get their code to work with the faster and more efficient edition of Java ? Support there will not answer the question. I don't quite "get it"...what's the big secret ?
    (Note: no response from the options forum on this. I was surprised there was no comment !)
  2. thstart


    I am surprised they use Java. Java by definition is slow.
  3. not anymore.
  4. soks86


    Yeah, Java being slow in this day and age is a bit of a joke, you know exchanges use it too. Not to say C/C++ doesn't have its place for very fast code (perhaps only after Java has been attempted) but I would look into GPU development first, assuming you're doing options or something other than plain data manipulation.

    As for why they wouldn't update, that is a bit odd. I assume they just don't have the resources to efficiently test their systems again 1.6. In reality there were some major changes after 1.4 but I would think those pieces that literally don't work (not compile) in 1.6 wouldn't be too hard to fix otherwise. Must be a lack of resources, you can view this as good if they're working on adding features but old versions of Java are much less flexible.

    Sorry though I don't use ThinkOrSwim and am not aware of how well it does or doesn't function under Java 6.
  5. Thanks for the comments...finally...guys. I agree, Java apps under JRE 6 are nearly as fast as C++ apps...after they are pre-compiled of course. However, I think Java apps, especially those as complex as the TOS platform really hit the CPU hard. Many times my CPU spikes to 80% utilization and that is on a finely tuned Windows 2000 box.
    There is something very strange about TOS regarding their technology. One of the techies even said my inquiry was looking like a breach of intellectual property. Very odd response, wouldn't you say ? Also, very odd: Java 6 has been thru 11 releases now and 2 years of deployment. Why don't they use it ? I ran their platform on Friday with 1.6_11 and it seemed to work fine. There were no crashes. Still scratching my head here....
  6. thstart


    I have not tested Java but my experience with C# and VB.NET
    and C++ shows that to get the maximum performance C++ gives much more room because you can go to the bare metal for optimizations. Also the memory requirements in C# and VB.NET a bigger. I don;t wonder so many vendors a having problems when moving to .NET. It is too bloated and not optimized. The paradox (from my experience) is that for developers it is good (you develop faster) but performance in execution suffers. The bottom line is end users don't care of nothing but performance.

    Just in time (JIT) compiler technology being Java, .NET C#, VB.NET by definition is slower - you have an overhead. It can potentially have an advantage in a very long running processes through run time statistical optimization.

    There are performance differences in I/O, memory allocation, list structures but in C++ it depends which library is used. If the application is written good and with C++ you have more possibilities for optimization.

    For arithmetic calculations you cannot beat C++ by default. If you make custom optimization with compilation switches, you can get even more gain especially if you use multi core. Also it depends if you use Intel or Microsoft compiler. Intel compiler for example uses optimizations for the latest processors. Microsoft is lagging. Also there are specialized high performance libraries.

    The bottom line is how capable is the programming team to extract the maximum performance from the current technology.
  7. Wow - interesting stuff. Funny how the company touts their techies and none of them ever looked Russian. I guess that was just "for show".
    The fact of this outsourcing does explain why it takes so long to get enhancements and/or fixes to the platform. After reviewing the awful implementation of Thinkscript, I told them to create an API to the platform instead. That was 2 years ago. I hear they are finally going to do it.
  8. thstart


    Forget companies doing outsourcing, especially financial applications.
  9. That attitude would definitely be a reason for them to hide the outsourcing.

    Here's just a good example of what happens when the outsourcing staff lacks insight and foresight into how the application could be improved and how everything is cohesive:
    They recently implemented a "notes" feature whereby any trade could have a note attached to it. Pretty cool, eh ? However, they forgot to include the note in the email confirmations that has all of the trade information ! I couldn't believe it.
    Wait, it gets better. They allow trades to be listed for up to 365 days at a time and they do include the notes. However, there is no way to EXPORT the trades with the notes. You can only "see" them on the screen. The only way to get them into a file format is to do screen capture and then use OCR to convert to real digital values. Crazy, huh ?
    #10     Feb 21, 2009